Helena edges Pell City to improve to 4-1 early in season
Published 3:51 pm Wednesday, February 22, 2023
By ALEC ETHEREDGE | Managing Editor
HELENA – A big fourth inning proved to be the difference in a battle of top Class 6A teams on Tuesday, Feb. 21, as the Helena Huskies picked up a tight one-run victory over Pell City to improve to 4-1 early in the 2023 softball season.
Tied 2-2, the Huskies loaded the bases with a walk from Amelia Powell and back-to-back singles from Reese McLellan and Grace Wilkins.
That set the stage for Presley Lively, who stepped to the plate and hit a fly ball to left field that eventually drove home pinch runner Hannah Steele for a 3-2 lead.
Despite it being only the fourth inning, the Huskies were able to make that the game-winning run thanks to strong pitching and defense the rest of the way, as they allowed just two more base runners in the final three innings.
Powell was a big reason for that, as the starting pitcher got the complete-game victory. She allowed eight hits and only two runs while striking out six.
It capped off an exciting game that saw the two trade two-run innings early in the matchup.
Helena struck first in the bottom of the first thanks to a two-RBI single to left field from Mar Beth Allen that drove home both Emma Olive and Victoria Mauterer for a 2-0 advantage.
Pell City, however, responded quickly in the top of the second with a two-run bomb over the right-field wall to quickly even the score at 2-2.
Powell, however, bounced back with two strikeouts and got out of the inning without any further damage, while she didn’t allow another run the rest of the way to lead her team to the win.
Lively and McLellan led Helena with two hits each, while Lively also had one RBI. Allen finished with two RBIs on one hit, while Cammi Pugh and Wilkins each finished with a hit as well.